Thriving PhD community, contributing to an academically stimulating environment Thriving PhD community, contributing to an academically stimulating environment

We have a thriving and active Postgraduate community with over 40 students currently working towards their PhD. If you have a research proposal that you would like to discuss, or any questions about the Postgraduate research that goes on here, please contact our Postgraduate Research Director, Dr Sarah Garland.

All applications for our Postgraduate Degrees are handled by the Faculty of Arts and Humanities Graduate School.

82% of research in Film, Television and Media Studies was rated 4* (world leading) or 3* (internationally excellent) according to the Research Excellence Framework (REF2014), a major Government analysis of university research quality. Additionally, our research output was rated 4th in the UK in the Times Higher Education REF2014 rankings.

Staff research interests

If you do your PhD with us, you'll be supervised by one or more members of our internationally renowned research staff. We are active in wide and varied fields of research, from film and television history to gender and post-feminism, national cinema studies (particularly Britain and Japan), and audience and reception studies. Our research output was described as producing work of ‘international excellence', that is ‘world leading' in the most recent UK government Research Assessment Exercise.

Student research

Our current students are producing equally compelling research: recent and current research topics include fantasy in British cinema, online fan communities, gay celebrity in British reality TV, marketing horror films, ‘dark' comedy, masculinity and the contemporary Hollywood rom-com, the Chinese reception of Avatar, audiences and film trailers, and the representation of ‘tween' culture in contemporary film and TV.

Study days and research skills training

As a Postgraduate student, you'll also be part of our regular research programme: you'll see guest lectures on the latest research in the field; you might be involved in organising one of our regular study days or symposia. (Recent events have covered youth media, new approaches to British cinema and television, promoting/marketing cinema and television, celebrity culture.) You'll take part in our weekly postgraduate training seminars, and you'll have the chance to hone your research skills through sessions organised through the Faculty of Arts and Humanities Graduate School.

PhD by Professional Practice (Creative / Critical)

In the late 1980s UEA pioneered in the UK a new type of creativity PhD, which can blend academic study into a creative discipline or theme, with the actual creation of a work of art or literature. This is now available here at UEA, in the form of a PhD by Professional Practice. This will provide postgraduate students or those with substantial existing creative experience with the opportunity to study and research at doctorate level film and TV theory and practice within a critical-creative research framework, at one of the first British universities to develop the study of film and television. More information here.

For information regarding studentships and scholarships, see our Funding for Postgraduate Research Degrees page.

PhD Programme 2017

The School of Art, Media and American Studies (AMA) at the University of East Anglia is inviting applications to our PhD programme.


This year (entrance in Oct 2017) the School intends to offer two fully-funded PhD studentships (Home/EU rates) in the following area of research:


American Visual Cultures


We see this as a broad and inclusive intellectual area that stresses the cross-disciplinary strengths of the School. Projects here could include aspects of American media, studies in America and the Americas, or issues around the trans-Atlantic. However, these are just indicative examples, and we would urge applicants to define and develop their relationship to American Visual Cultures in their proposals.


The University of East Anglia is part of the AHRC consortium CHASE (Consortium for the Arts and Humanities in South East England) which offers around 75 fully funded (tuition and maintenance grant) studentships per year to Home/EU PhD students across the consortium.


Additionally, there are fully funded Scholarships (equivalent to AHRC rates for both tuition and maintenance) offered by the Faculty (including 2 international), as well as the two School studentships outlined above.


The School holds a wealth of expertise in Art History and World Art Studies; Film, Television, and Media; and American Studies. You may wish to consult our list of staff and their research interests for guidance on possible supervisory expertise:


Particular research strengths are in the following areas:


Art History

American Studies

Film, Television and Media

World Art

Race, Gender, and Civil Liberties

Feminist Media Studies

Techniques of Making

Space, Place, and Environment

Media and Cultural Consumption

Material Histories

Popular and Avant-Garde Cultures

British Film and Television

Museums, Exhibition and Heritage

Transatlantic and Transpacific Studies

Genre Studies



It is important that prospective applicants contact the School as a matter of urgency to start the application process, preferably no later than the end of November to ensure that you work with potential supervisors on developing your proposal prior to application.


The deadline for applications (including all supporting information such as references) is Wednesday 11th January 2017.


Enquiries and how to apply

If you are interested in applying for a PhD in Art, Media or American Studies at UEA, please contact the School’s Director of Postgraduate Research, Dr Sarah Garland (, or contact a prospective supervisor directly but copying Dr Garland into the email.
More information and details of how to apply can be found at:  


Alternatively, please contact the Humanities Graduate School at: